Though ever-escalating COVID-19 diagnoses in Florida now have many wondering if the NBA’s plan to resume its shelved season within the Disney World campus is in trouble, the league continues to proceed with business as usual.
Well, OK — not as usual, but with business, nevertheless.
Over the weekend, several reports emerged giving new details about updated rules governing coaches and players in team facilities, an upcoming “transaction window” to fortify rosters, and even concrete dates for the NBA draft and free agency.
For starters, Shams Charania of The Athletic reported that the transaction window — in which teams can sign players for the rest of the season, add substitute players to fill injury spots, add or subtract players through the waivers process, convert two-way contracts to standard NBA deals, and sign players to two-way deals — will begin Tuesday at 10 a.m. MDT and conclude June 30 at 9:59 p.m. MDT.
Meanwhile, with Monday marking the deadline for all players to report to their home markets, and teams required to test players for COVID-19 between June 23 and June 30, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski provided some news about how team facilities can now be occupied.
Wojnarowski reported that the league sent out a memo indicating that, as teams start to ramp up their pre-training camp activities, they will be allowed to have up to 10 coaches in said facilities at a time, beginning this Tuesday.
Furthermore, teams can have four players in the facilities at a time between June 23 and June 30, and then eight at a time between July 1 and July 9, Wojnarowski added.
Previous reports have indicated that teams are expected to travel to Orlando sometime between July 7 and July 11.
Of course, the monthslong hiatus has not only delayed the playing of games, the postseason and the crowning of a league champion, but all the subsequent summer transactions that typically follow, as well.
There is now yet more certainty in that regard, as well.
Though the NBA draft typically takes place in late June, that’s not really feasible now, considering the NBA Finals could go as late as Oct. 13. Now, rather than having the draft take place a few weeks after the final game, a condensed timeline will have it happen just days later.
Wojnarowski reported that the NBA draft, which was originally scheduled to take place Thursday, has now been rescheduled for Oct. 16. He added that the early-entry deadline to declare for the draft has correspondingly been shifted from April 26 to Aug. 17.
ESPN draft analyst Jonathan Givony reported, “Any player who has already applied for the NBA Draft’s original deadline of April 26 does not need to reapply. If a player applied and withdrew already, but now changed their mind, then they’d be able to reapply.”
Wojnarowski concluded the Draft-related news by noting that the early-entry withdrawal date is now Oct. 6 — just 10 days before the Draft takes place.
He did have a few more new tidbits, though — these ones related to free agency. While negotiating between players and teams is typically allowed to “officially” begin at 10 p.m. MDT on July 1, Wojnarowski reported that this year, negotiations will begin at 4 p.m. MDT on Oct. 18. There will technically be a moratorium period on deals in place between Oct. 19 and Oct. 23, after which contracts can be officially signed.